Deputy Energy Secretary Claims U.S. Seeks Energy Dominance

Dan Brouillette, the U.S. deputy energy secretary, said Monday that the country seeks to achieve complete energy dominance no matter what happens to oil prices.

Brouillette told CNBC that the American energy policy although not aimed at affecting prices, “it does because of our production numbers.”

This past year, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries has been grappling to sustain crude futures as the wide-ranging trade war between the U.S. and China has caused a deteriorating outlook for global growth. This has put in question OPEC’s ability to wield great influence over world crude markets.

“Our energy policy is not designed to affect price, that’s not we do for a living. And yet it does because of our production numbers,” the deputy secretary told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble at the World Energy Congress in Abu Dhabi. “The President has an ‘all of the above’ strategy. He talks often about energy dominance and the world often asks: what does that mean? It just simply means that we are going to produce as much energy as we can, as cleanly as we can and as affordably as we can.”

He then stressed that what happens to oil process is of no concern to the U.S., which aims to achieve energy dominance at all cost.

The U.S. has seen a significant increase in oil production in the past ten years, doubling it to 12.3 million barrels per day, becoming in turn the largest oil producer in the world. The country seems to be pushing for increased production, supplying the already saturated market with more crude and pushing prices even further down.

However, prices rose slightly on Monday, as news broke that Saudi Arabia would continue to support OPEC-led output cuts under the kingdom’s new energy minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman. Bin Salman is expected to keep in line with Saudi Arabia’s current oil policy, considering that he helped negotiate the current agreement between OPEC and non-OPEC countries to limit global crude supply.

“He’s got a very tough road ahead of him, I must say. U.S. production will continue to go up all throughout 2019 and certainly to 2020,” Brouillette said of the prince.

He added that based on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the United States was set to pump over 13 million bpd in 2019 and about 13.5 million bpd next year.

“That will have a profound impact on pricing — so he does have his work cut out for him,” Brouillette noted.

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